Meet Jelly, the Nougat smartphone that we didn’t ask for in 2017

There was a time where Samsung Galaxy S’s 4″ WVGA display is being introduced as “Large, high-resolution display” while the first Galaxy Note is known as “Giant” and reviewer noticed weird stare by the public for holding such a huge phone. As time passes, we reached a point where 5.1″ Full HD display for 2017 flagship is considered too small & low resolution. In the time of everyone fighting to squeeze the biggest display into their phone, a small company called Unihertz decided to go opposite and introduce possibly the smallest smartphone that runs Android Nougat, meet Jelly.

Spec sheet wise, the Jelly actually packs a whole lot of feature on its 92.3 x 43 x 13.3 mm size (It’s barely a quarter of the size comparing to iPhone 7 Plus or Pixel XL!). You get a 2.45″ display with a resolution of 240 x 432 pixels running on a Quad-core Mediatek processor, 1/2GB of RAM & 8/16GB of ROM. Most importantly, Jelly is running on the latest mainstream Android version in the market, the Nougat 7.0. Even my 2016 flagship Huawei P9 has yet to get a taste of Nougat at the time of writing.

As a phone size that small, Jelly comes with compromise. For instance, the battery is only 950mAh, probably won’t be the longest-lasting phone that you want but at least it is interchangeable so you can pop in the spare battery if required. The charging time for this phone is going to be significantly shorter since there is so little power consumption on the 2.45″ display.
One thing to be clear of, Jelly is not going to replace your iPhone 7 Plus or Galaxy S8 as the primary phone. Jelly is rather a really compact secondary/backup phone with a decent specification. You are able to get the Jelly (1GB RAM/8GB ROM) or Jelly Pro (2GB RAM/16GB ROM) on Kickstarter by clicking here. Pricing for Jelly starts at US$69 while Jelly Pro starts at US$85 with limited quantity before moving on to the next price range. Their Kickstarter page is fully funded within 57 minutes shows that Jelly is definitely here to stay.

 

Review: The HTC U Ultra

The HTC U Ultra, designed for U, is the latest phone from HTC that is uniquely different from their previous phones. Moving away from the unibody metal signature look, the U Ultra boldly plonks for glass that has been made popular by the like of Samsung. I might miss the industrial look of the HTC One series, but the U Ultra with the new Liquid Surface looks good in a refreshing way, especially the brighter colours like blue and turquoise. The way it catches light and shimmers like a piece of jewellery is stunning. Let’s dive deeper with the phone.
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Google Pixel & Pixel XL is out! (Bye Nexus)

The rumor has been proven true – the Google Nexus line is officially dead. Yep, bye Nexus, as Google just introduced two Google Pixel smartphone, namely the Pixel & Pixel XL (a href = “http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeanbaptiste/2016/10/05/the-pixel-smartphone-is-actually-made-by-htc-not-google/#6aa1a1d54ac9″>made by HTC).

Specification of Pixel & Pixel XL

  • 5-inch Full HD / 5.5-inch Quad-HD AMOLED display
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 821 processor
  • 4GB of RAM
  • 32GB/128GB storage
  • 12.3-megapixel camera with f/2.0, 1.55um pixels
  • 8-megapixel-front-facing camera
  • 3.5mm headphone jack (Rejoice my friends!)
  • 2,770 mAh / 3,450 mAh
  • Android 7.1 Nougat with new Pixel Launcher, Google Assistant and Google Magic
  • Google Daydream (VR)

Unlike last year Nexus 5X v 6P where there is a significant difference between the specification (eg. Snapdragon 808 v Snapdragon 810). The Pixel line has similar specification so you are able to get the same amount of power regardless of which model you chose. An interesting thing to note is that both Pixel & Pixel XL are smaller than previously Nexus 5X & Nexus 6P in term of screen size, which should be more suitable for one hand usage.

The Pixel comes in three colour – Quite Black, Really Blue & Very Silver (Yes it’s not a hoax).
The end of Nexus line also means the end of affordable stock Google devices, the 32GB Pixel costs US$649 and goes up to US$869 for the XL with 128GB.

With the HTC struggle to bring in HTC 10 into local market for months, we are highly doubtful that Pixel will be available in local market in near future.

LG Brings The X Power to Singapore

Under the LG X Series, the new X Power offers extended battery life, and will be launched this Saturday, September 17 2016. It’s a phone with a 4,100 mAH battery, in a relatively compact body of 7.9mm. This phone is targete at those who need a long battery life. Be it frequently out and about salesperson or Pokemon Go Players. LG claims a 72 hour usage life on a single charge.

The phone boasts Fast Charging, which is useful to fill up the 4,100 mAH battery. Time to full charge is approximately 1.8 hours thanks the Pump Express Plus technology (Mediatek QC alternative). It can also double up as a charger for other mobile devices by connecting them to the phone via the USB On the Go cable (USB OTG).

There is the usual software optimisations from LG. The X Power runs on a Mediatek MT6735 , 2GB RAM, 16GB Internal Storage, and a 5.3″ 720P screen. NFC is included, so you have access to Android Pay. Unlike the flagship sibling, the X Power battery is non-removable. The X power will be retailing for S$298 from M1, Singtel, StarHub, and authorized LG retailers. Each purchase comes with free LG premiums including a Transparent Jelly Case, Screen Protector and Reverse Charging Cable worth a total of $48, while stocks last.

Thoughts:

The X Power is probably too late to enter the Singapore market. Similar models are available from ASUS (Zenfone 3 Max) or Xiaomi (Redmi 3), which include useful additions such as fingerprint sensors. One plus point on the LG X Power is the fast charging support.

Do you want a Android Flip Phone?

Let’s face it, the phone you are using is getting bigger each year.


At 2011, Samsung introduced Samsung Galaxy Note, its 5.3″ screen is consider as gigantic and was deemed as potential flop where everyone thinks it’s just too large for a proper usage. However, it did went on to be successful and right now we are at the 6th Generation with Galaxy Note7.

In contrast, at 2016, ZTE just announced their latest Axon 7 Mini. The word ‘Mini’ would be misleading as the screen size is at 5.2″, which is just 0.1″ smaller comparing to 2011 giant Galaxy Note. While we can argue that with the improvement of design (especially with smaller screen bezel), it is easier to handle these phablet, but it’s still beyond comfortable one hand usage.

With a sole touchscreen design getting more common each year, the only way to make significant difference is to go beyond the norm and introduce a unique phone design. Blackberry does it with the sliding keyboard on the Priv, however the average specification that can’t justify the expensive price tag is unable to bring Blackberry back to their previous glory.

Here’s where Asia market came into picture, taking Japan as an example, 2016 will be the first time where Smartphone overtaking feature phone in the total mobile phone market share. In the past, as Japan are often advanced in their IT technologies, they have already been using cashless payment with their feature phone. Hence most of the population doesn’t feel the need to get a smartphone since their feature phone can get most of the task done.

However as the younger generation started to use Android/iOS smartphone, feature phone without the ability to install application (such as Line, Whatsapp) created a communication gap. To close up the gap, Japan phone maker such as Sharp introduced a flip phone running on Android, hoping to attract both older & younger generation at the same time.

On the other hand Korea phone maker, Samsung and LG brought smart-flip phone to Korea and China market.
LG Introduced LG Wine/Gentle/Ice Cream Smart which based on same design and specification of Snapdragon 400.

Samsung went further by tackling both lower & flagship market. Samsung introduced a Samsung Galaxy Golden in 2013 that feature dual touchscreen and continue to introduce a follow up with last year W2016 – technically known as a Galaxy S6 in Flip phone form. W2016 can only be purchased in China and costed more than SGD$1500 even in today’s market where S7/Note7 are widely available now.

Thankfully for people who are on budget, Samsung doesn’t neglected lower end market by introducing Galaxy Folder last year and continue with Galaxy Folder 2 as follow up.

According to leaked image and detail. Samsung Galaxy Folder 2 pack a 3.8″ WVGA display, running on the Snapdragon 425 along with 2GB RAM. Its expected pricing is around USD$285, a sweet spot for unique flip phone experience. Unfortunately, it is unlikely to be introduce in Singapore market given that almost no Android flip phone has been officially available in Singapore before. Would you like to get your hand on one of these unique phone? I would definitely like to experience it all over again given that my last flip phone is the Panasonic GD88 which is introduced in 2002.

Play Pokemon Go on Your PC with KoPlayer

Pokemon Go is still not launched in Singapore but there is a new way to play it on your Windows PC with KOPLAYER. This China company is marketing its Android emulator as a way to play Pokemon Go.

Afraid of going out into the streets in this not-so-safe world we live in? Considering the possibility of bad traffic, poor road conditions and car accidents? Sick of battery issues? They are now introducing a new way to play Pokemon GO on your PC computer in a safe way with a bigger screen and more fun via KOPLAYER Android emulator.

Hilarious really. But KOPLAYER is riding on the Pokemon Go craze to it’s Android emulator. Pokemon Go has really shaken the world. Even our Singapore minister says it will monitor the game’s impact on society, while our neighbours Malaysia are worried about the game’s impact.

Based on augmented reality, just about everyone has heard about this game. Hundreds of those adorable, yet ferocious, little creatures have invaded our real world, well except Singapore, Malaysia, and a whole lot of other countries really, so you would need to spoof your location in order to play the game. You may get banned though, so you may want to check out how not to get ban while spoofing your GPS location on Pokemon Go.

With KOPLAYER, it is all setup to play Pokemon Go. The APK is a click to download, and the location is pre-set to Sydney Australia. Pokemon GO gamers can use their keyboard to control and move in a convenient way. Click keyboard setting to use the WASD keys then you can walk anywhere on the map without going outside to waste your battery and date usage.

It’s really easy to use. I would only advise you not to use your actual Google account, you never know what information is transferred through the app. The app should be released in Singapore really soon though.

“We expect it to be released by the end of July.”

Going by Niantic CEO, John Hanke’s words, it is almost certain that the rest of the Asian countries including Singapore, India, Malaysia, China and others would be getting the official game release in the next few days.

Source: Pokemon GO Now on PC with KOPLAYER